Articles from Germany

Germany: Swift action needed to keep offshore wind on track

In light of these major challenges, can Germany keep its offshore wind programme on track? While there are no fixed dates as to when the administration will act, Mr. Wesselink is adamant that swift action is essential for Germany's offshore wind programme to succeed. "Only when the new legislation has been drafted in line with our plans, will it be possible [for Germany to meet its offshore wind target]".
28 Feb 2012

Merkel's switch to renewables: Rising energy prices endanger German industry

There is no sign yet of the green economic miracle that the federal government promised would accompany Germany's new energy strategy. On the contrary, many manufacturers of wind turbines and solar panels complain that business is bad and are cutting jobs. Some solar companies have already gone out of business. The environmental sector faces a number of problems, especially -- and ironically -- those stemming from high energy prices.
24 Feb 2012

E.On warns of delayed grid connections

Grid operators are not given sufficient financial incentives to connect wind farms to the grid. There is a lack of co-ordination among the authorities as to who is responsible for what. ..."I'm pessimistic for the time after 2015 if nothing changes. No one will go on investing if the grid link is as uncertain as it is now, neither E.on nor others."
20 Feb 2012

Germany's wind power revolution in the doldrums

The wind farm operator, German utility RWE, has to keep the sensitive equipment -- the drives, hubs and rotor blades -- in constant motion, and for now that requires diesel-powered generators. Because although the wind farm will soon be ready to generate electricity, it won't be able to start doing so because of a lack of infrastructure to transport the electricity to the mainland and feed it into the grid. The necessary connections and cabling won't be ready on time and the delay could last up to a year.
31 Dec 2011

Green energy could trigger 'catastrophic' blackouts

In eastern Germany, turbines in strong wind can produce more than all German coal and gas plants put together, while the need to switch off turbines in high winds causes a drop-off in electricity of 12GW - equal to two nuclear power plants. Outages are likely if there is too little demand or storage capacity to accommodate the jumps in supply.
23 Nov 2011

Germany and Italy accused of 'overestimating' wind speeds

"In terms of the good, the bad and the ugly wind projects from a moneymaking point of view, many in Germany and Italy have been bad. "There has been persistent overestimation of wind speeds in Germany and Italy. Developers and turbine manufacturers want to record high wind speeds to get projects off the ground. But now investors are wising up."
9 Sep 2011

Germany dims nuclear plants, but hopes to keep lights on

"Germany, in a very rash decision, decided to experiment on ourselves," he said. "The politics are overruling the technical arguments." ...To be prudent, the plan calls for the creation of 23 gigawatts of gas- and coal-powered plants by 2020. Why? Because renewable plants don't produce nearly to capacity if the air is calm or the sky is cloudy, and there is currently limited capacity to store or transport electricity, energy experts say.
30 Aug 2011

Saving Germany's whales from wind farm noise

"From the standpoint of environmental protection, it's necessary to decrease noise pollution in marine ecosystems," BfN acknowledges in the introduction of its recent report. The study looks to the guidelines set forth by the Federal Environment Agency (UBA), which suggest that noise outside of a 750 meter radius from the construction site should not exceed 160 decibels.
8 Aug 2011

The trouble with renewables for post-nuclear Germany

Germany plans to shut down its last nuclear power plant in 2022. It's an ambitious timetable. But even more ambitious is its plan to replace that energy with renewable sources, such as wind and solar power. If the plan works, within 40 years Germany will get 80 percent of its power from "renewables." But there are major challenges.
21 Jul 2011

Energy: Betting the wind farm

Mr Vogt says he is sceptical about the timing of the renewables phase-in. "The public accepts projects only when it can see the sense in them," he says. "We need politics to help us with that. We need to tell people the switch to renewables will not come without costs."
4 Jul 2011

Fuming over the Phase-Out: Energy Shift Deeply Divides German Companies

Germany's nuclear phase-out is creating a new divide within the economy. On the one side are the energy-intensive businesses in the aluminum, cement and paper industries, which will see their electricity bills go up as a result of the nuclear phase-out. And on the other side is the growing renewable energy sector, which is starting to fill its order books as Chancellor Angela Merkel's nuclear turnaround becomes a reality.
30 Jun 2011

Costs warning over windfarm

Rochdale council could face significant legal costs if it moves to block the construction of a windfarm on the hills above Watergrove reservoir. That was the stark warning given to Rochdale Township planning sub-committee this week by a senior planning officer.
10 Jun 2011
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